Thursday, January 26, 2012

Christmas Show

We have our cast.


Frosty and Brian the World's Tallest Elf

Snow White and the Seven Tall Dwarfs

Frosty has treats!

He sees you when you're sleeping...

Don't kill Santa!

Merry Christmas!

Click the pix for larger picture.

Our new school will be opening in the middle of February. A lot of money has been sunk into remodeling an old government building to make a state of the art school where preschool kids get a strong foundation of skills to groom them for the rigors of the Chinese school system.
During the month of December we worked to promote the school with lots of publicity and some big events. Since it is an "international school", they wanted us to have a Christmas show.
First, we needed to decorate the school. Since Christmas is as alien to these folks as Chinese New Year is to Americans, they needed a crash course in what decorations to use. Fortunately, there is a street in our city where the shopkeepers have all loaded up on Christmas goodies. We took a group down to that street and had a heyday shopping. Once we had acquired a wealth of goodies, the teaching and administrative staff did a fine job decorating.
A talent search was conducted at one of our other kindergartens for kids who could sing, speak English, and who possessed the attention spans required to rehearse for long periods of time.
The show consisted of many shows and some games. There was a play of "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs", although the entire cast was pretty much dwarf sized. I read the "Night Before Christmas" with our teenage British friend who translated it into his excellent Mandarin. There was a traditional British family Christmas sketch, Frosty the Snowman, and several cute songs by the kids. I made a fool of myself as Santa Claus, with my son as the "World's Tallest Elf" and we did a duet of "Santa Claus is Coming to Town".
The crowd was stoked. We then took our large bag of goodies to distribute and things got a bit sketchy. Chinese people do not politely queue up for anything. They crowd, and cut in and basically act like a bunch of American shoppers on Black Friday, sans pepper spray and tasers. This crowd was worse than some. I felt like a UN relief worker handing out food in Darfur. My Chinese assistant kept saying "move forward". Like one guy in a Santa suit was going to make headway through a couple of hundred parents and kids all vying for candy and mini teddy bears. When we ran out, I had a momentary sense of panic, but miraculously the crowd receded and we were able to gracefully exit to have our pictures taken by parents while posing with their cute rugrats.
It was a fun, successful event. We brought a bit of western culture to the Far East, and we introduced a new day on which children here can harass their parents for gifts.

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